Just because a lot of companies use shopper insights does not mean that everyone should.
Maybe you are skeptical about whether shopper insights would be right for your organization where there are many competing priorities. A few simple questions can help you get a feel for whether it is worthwhile investing in understanding shopper insights.
First, how well does your team understand your target shoppers? In some companies the answer may be very well. But in most cases, the team does not know shoppers as well as they could. Just because you yourself shop the category does not mean that you have insights into the behavior of shoppers in general. Some of the key questions you should be able to answer are how do shoppers plan their purchase, on what shopping trips do they purchase your product on, how do shoppers shop your category, how engaged are your shoppers and what mindset are they in.
Secondly, what do you want to change about your business? Getting to know how shoppers think, feel and behave can help you maintain your market position, but that may not convince your decision makers that it is worth doing. Instead, shopper research pays for itself best when it is used to aid decision making in business objectives which will go against a clear business goal. That could be as basic as understanding why a product line does better in one retailer than in another, or more complex, such as how to get people to shop for different products in a single trip.
Thirdly, do you understand the overall drivers around your category and brand? Shopper insights are an excellent way of drilling into the detail of what goes on in the retail journey – but in most cases they work best in conjunction with consumer insights. Effective shopper insights help to identify the triggers and barriers to purchasing. Understanding what will engage your shopper at the point of purchase will help to drive those incremental purchases. The triggers can be different throughout one aisle in a store.
Once you decide that Shopper Insights are right for your organization, you will want to establish a plan to manage and execute your shopper insights. Many different approaches can be used, here is an example of one approach for a CPG company.